It is a municipality in the western part of the Bologna plain, located on the via Emilia, about fifteen kilometres from Bologna. It is part of the union of municipalities “Terre d‘acqua” (Water lands). It is situated between the Reno and the Panato, two important rivers of the area and is crossed by the river Samoggia.
Anzola dell ‘Emilia is a municipality in the western part of the Bologna plain, located on the via Emilia, about fifteen kilometres from Bologna. It is part of the union of municipalities “Terre d‘acqua” (Water lands). It is situated between the Reno and the Panato, two important rivers of the area and is crossed by the river Samoggia.
Here you will find the Carpigiani Gelato Museum, the first museum in the world where you can retrace the history, culture and technology of one of the most famous gastronomic products in the world: Italian home-made ice cream.
Carpigiani offers tasty workshops to learn how to make ice cream and sorbets, guided tours and tastings of various types of ice cream.
But Anzola is also an area rich in history, including ancient history. The remains of a Terramara, a village of the bronze age, typical of central-western Emilia were found in the municipality and are today preserved in the Museo archeologico Ambientale (Environmental Archaeology Museum). The remains testify to the close and ancient relationship of Anzola with water, which has always been a great wealth but also a great threat to these lands.
In addition, Anzola is also home to one of the oldest churches in the province, the chiesa dei Santi Pietro e Paolo (church of Saints Peter and Paul), of medieval origin. Inside is a thirteenth-century baptismal font and important works by Spisanelli and Guardassoni.
The Badia di Santa Maria in Strada (Abbey of Santa Maria in Strada) or chiesa della Natività di Maria (Church of the Nativity of Mary), founded in 994 by Bernardino di Mandello Boccadiferro on behalf of the Camaldolese monks is also worth a visit. After the renovation work in the year 1000 it grew in importance to become a point of reference for the monks and for the entire rural community of Santa Maria in Strada. This building was rebuilt in 1787/88 but still preserves some traces of portals from the 14th and 15th centuries of ancient construction.
Inside there are paintings by Cavedoni, Spisanelli and Gessi, as well as important works by the wood carver Gaetano Lipparini.
Finally, a stop at the thirteenth century Torre di Re Enzo (King Enzo’s tower) is a must. It is the only evidence of the ancient castle of the Lords of these lands. It evokes the times of the war between the municipalities in which the emperor’s son, Enzo, was taken hostage. He was imprisoned in the tower until his transfer to Bologna, to Palazzo Re Enzo.